Phosphorescent brought 2018 to a close with the release of C’est La Vie, his superlative new album that made great use of Americana and alt-country influences to position itself as one of the year’s best indie records. Now Matthew Houck has shared a new Spotify Singles release, and it features a cover of J.J. Cale’s “Wish I Had Not Said That,” which originally appeared on his 1982 album Shades. His version is pretty faithful to Cale’s original, although the new rendition adds a buoyant energy to the track.
Houck has also offered a new recording of the album’s title track, “C’est La Vie No. 2.” This version of the track is more stripped down than what appears on the album, which allows the ambient organ lines that served a more textural role on the album version to shine through and add a new dimension to the track.
Houck previously told Uproxx that “C’est La Vie No. 2” is the song he credits with helping the album along in a big way, saying, “I had gotten started on some of these songs. A verse here, a verse there. Specifically the title track ‘C’est La Vie’ was the quickest one to pop together, and then it sort of retroactively allowed me to finish other songs where I just didn’t quite know what they were. Something crucial was missing from several of them, and then ‘C’est La Vie’ made it clear as to what the whole thing was, and thereby opened up what to do on each song.”
Listen to the songs above, and revisit our interview with Houck here.